The federal Paycheck Protection Program reopened earlier this month, but the new round is a bit different than the first. In a virtual town hall Thursday, Rep. Mike Garcia, R-Santa Clarita, offered local business owners information about the loans.
“This is focused on and for small businesses, as you all navigate not only the challenges that you’re having with the COVID virus but also the reaction to the COVID virus in California,” he said. The congressman was joined by Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer, R-Missouri, the ranking member of the House Small Business Committee, and committee policy expert Robert Yavor.
The discussion included a question-and-answer session with inquiries from small-business owners from Garcia’s 25th Congressional District.
First-timer or second draw?
Small businesses that did not receive a PPP loan during the first round can apply during this second time around. That window opened Jan. 11 and is set to close March 31. Those who did receive funds previously have a window from Jan. 13 through March 31.
The requirements for second draws are that you must have spent the full amount of the first loan for authorized uses and be able to demonstrate at least a 25% reduction in gross receipts between comparable quarters in 2019 and 2020.
Can you apply for a different amount in the second round?
The loan amount calculation is going to be similar to that of the first-round loan amount calculation, 2.5 times your average monthly payroll, according to Yavor.
“What we’re encouraging is to sit down with your lender. While you have already received one the first time around, the second time we’ll have the same calculation, but it would be good to just sit down and talk through some of those numbers,” he said. “Generally, if your headcount has gone up or down, that’s where you may see some fluctuations where your payroll will change.”
Some of the changes
While the original maximum loan amount was $10 million, this time around it is $2 million. However, the interest rate of 1% and the payback period of five years have not changed. Who qualifies for a loan has changed. Businesses now must provide proof that revenue has declined by at least 25% during a 2020 quarter when compared to 2019, must not have more than 300 workers rather than 500 previously required, and those who started up after Feb. 15 do not qualify.
Where do you get your loan through?
“The (Small Business Administration) is not the point of contact for the Paycheck Protection Program. So, we recommend working directly with the lender on this and for the forgiveness process,” said Yavor.